CaribbeanDays wants you to explore the oldest cathedral – burial cavern

The Fountain Caverns has recently received National Parks status with unesco.org. You can now see the Fountain Caverns that is also the oldest cathedral in the New World. Book your stay with CaribbeanDays to experience this new opportunity!

Ceremonial Priest performing ritual at Fountain National Park and Archaeologists


Fountain Cavern bears exceptional testimony to cultural and spiritual traditions of the indigenous Caribbean peoples. Spanish history documents that the culturally related Taíno people of the Greater Antilles believed that the sun, the moon and the first people all emerged from caves. They built shrines in ceremonial caves to induce rainfall and buried elite individuals within them. Fountain Cavern’s stalagmite statue places the site within the Taíno mythological realm. A masterwork within its cultural context, the head of the statue is carved into a likeness of “Yucahú,” the “God of Yuca” (Cassava), a spirit of fertility. Amerindians used the natural space and geologic formations of Fountain Cavern to reveal and engage with the supernatural world. The three-dimensional statue overlooking the freshwater pool, associated artefact deposits and the gallery of at least 12 other petroglyphs establish that Fountain Cavern was a highly significant place of worship. Fountain Cavern has outstanding universal value as a monument to Amerindian religion and spirituality and as the earliest known site of its kind in the Caribbean. As such, Fountain Cavern represents the cultural equivalent of a listed site such as the Catedral Primada de America, the oldest cathedral in the New World.

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